Joe Parent is a senior marketing & business strategy executive who remains "calm in the chaos", quickly sorting through ambiguity to create winning strategies. Working across diverse industries including telecommunications, software, employee benefits and home services, he creates strategic advantages from disruptive technologies, deregulation and industry transformation, helping companies pivot and scale quickly.
He has a full range of marketing competencies including strategic planning, business and marketing planning, product/brand management, advertising, digital marketing, public relations and regulatory affairs. Joe has worked in Canada, the US and Europe while overseeing budgets of up to USD$160M annually.
Most recently, Joe was Vice President Marketing & Customer Success at Venngo, Canada's largest provider of private group discount programs. He transformed Sales and Marketing, and created the Customer Success group, delivering exceptional customer experience and significantly improving client retention. He rebranded and repositioned the company to enhance the financial, physical and mental well-being of over 1.2M Canadian households.
Joe has a B.A (Hons) in economics from the University of Windsor and an MBA from McMaster University. In his rare free time, if he's not playing music with one of his 2 bands, he is probably day-dreaming about being a formula 1 driver.
Steve Edmondson is a Customer Experience and Service Operations executive. He empowers customer facing functions across multiple channels to successfully leverage the full value of customer interactions to deliver positive returns for the organization. With over 25 years of senior leadership experience in running call centre operations, customer service, and customer experience functions for major National organizations, Steve knows how vital an aligned strategy and robust cross-functional working partnership is to achieving exceptional results. He also believes that truly engaged employees are the foundation for building great customer experiences. He is proud of his reputation as a strong and engaging people leader and for developing high potential talent and effective teams.
Most recently, Steve served as VP of Canadian Contact Centres for Manulife, where the teams he oversaw were responsible for supporting customers across the full range of their diversified financial service product offerings. Prior to that he was VP Customer Service for Canada Post, where he led a multi-year departmental transformation to dramatically increase competitive performance through the introduction of new business structures, upgraded system capabilities, and operational enhancements. He also held a number of executive roles with Rogers Communications in support of contact centres, customer service, sales support, and customer experience functions, as well as senior management operational roles at Bell Canada.
Steve holds an MBA from the Schulich Business School and a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering from the University of Toronto. He relishes time spent at the family cottage, and enjoys skiing, fishing, and photography.
A project and change management executive with expertise in project investment optimization, building world class project management organizations, and developing high-performing project managers and teams. Known for finding, defining, and addressing the crux of business challenges through an integrated approach to systems thinking, quality, portfolio, project, and change management. Bringing clarity in determining the best investments in projects, processes and people gaining buy-in through change management with a sharp focus on organizational benefits & KPI.
Andrea Poptsis is transformational leader who excels at bringing order to chaos. She has over 20 years experience working with high-growth businesses, ranging from start-ups to new divisions within established corporations, across a variety of industries and geographies. Most recently, she was Chief Financial Officer of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 organizing committee where her financial, administrative and operational stewardship resulted in the games being delivered significantly under budget. Prior to Invictus, she was a key member of the Province of Ontario's 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games Secretariat where she led teams in finance, risk management and operations. Working on these complex, multi-stakeholder projects, Andrea learned how to get things done within government and the broader public service. She also has extensive private sector experience including serving as CFO of Pink Tartan, working in technology and media venture capital and advising start ups on growth, financing and corporate development.
Andrea has an H.B.A. from Ivey Business School and an M.B.A. from INSEAD. She sits on two not for profit boards and is a reluctant hockey mom who loves to play tennis.
C-A de Magistris
C-A is an accomplished Customer Experience transformation executive. He has a track record in building high performing teams, leveraging technology and data to drive customer and operational insights, and implementing pragmatic solutions. C-A's contributions unlocked real commercial benefits: revenue increase, lower churn, reduced operational expenses, and improved employee engagement. A strategic and analytical thinker, C-A takes an omnichannel approach to customer experience transformation and leans on his personal experience running both retail and contact center multi-sites/multi-partner operations in complex organizations.
C-A has held various senior leadership roles in Retail and Telecommunications since leaving Bain & Company 8 years ago. Most recently, he led Bell and Virgin brands' Loyalty and Retention group for all lines of business across Canada. In that role, he managed an internal team of 100 professionals to drive Consumer & Small Business loyalty strategy and insights, programs, and marketing campaigns. Additionally, he led the retention contact center operations with nearly 2,500 agents. His most material accomplishment in the role was a 10% wireless postpaid churn reduction over four years, worth over $700M in customer Life Time Value.
C-A holds an MBA from INSEAD, a Masters in Aerospace Engineering as well as a Bachelor in Mechanical Engineering from McGill University. He grew up in Nigeria and Europe before moving to Canada, plays hockey regularly, and volunteers as a self-expression and leadership coach.
Valerie (Val) Duffey
Val's corporate career spans more than 25 years over which time she's held a number of Human Resources executive positions in financial and professional services. Most recently, she was VP HR & Corporate Services at the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA) with a mandate to ready the organization for exponential growth in the context of Pearson's journey toward global mega hub airport status. Val is currently in search of her next CHRO mandate in an organization where the people strategy is positioned to drive competitive advantage through customer centricity, innovation and shared purpose.
Val holds a degree in Education from Ryerson University; a Certificate in Executive Organization Development from Columbia University; and, a Certificate in HR Management. Her passions include wellness, vegan cooking and hanging with her teen son. Val is a member of the Institute of Corporate Directors and sits on the Board of St. Michael's Choir School in downtown Toronto.
Craig Hudson is a senior finance executive with 20 years of experience rooted in analytics and informed by operations.
He was most recently the CFO of Lift & Co. (TSXV:LIFT), a hyper-growth technology company in the dynamic cannabis space, where he transformed a small start-up into a respected, publicly-listed company, building out the Finance, Human Resources and Operations functions and supporting a $10M raise concurrent with the TSXV listing in September 2018.
Previously, Craig spent 8 years at Indigo (TSX: IDG) where he led multiple initiatives to increase efficiencies, support growth, and drive profitability through leading the company's Business Intelligence teams and, ultimately, owning the end-to-end digital customer experience as the Vice President of Digital Operations.
Craig has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of British Columbia, and a CPA built off of a decade with KPMG (Vancouver, London, and Toronto).
Global Operations Executive. Innovative, entrepreneurial leader with a keen eye for identifying business and operational improvement opportunities, defining strategies, creating advanced systems, and developing high performance teams. Equally capable in crisis and rapid growth management situations with a focus on continuous improvement, market share growth, profit enhancement, and business revitalization. Proven ability to build strong customer relationships.
Operations leader with 20+ years of experience integrating, optimizing and increasing the bottom line in the high-end Consumer Package Goods industry in Europe, Asia and North America. Includes 10+ years refining P&G Omni-channel Operations in Canada and the USA.
Andres shapes high performing teams to deliver transformational results in projects, business units and large corporations alike. He thrives in challenging, pivotal environments where he can deliver critical step-changes that drive broad recognition and enduring results. His caring, optimistic and competitive nature engages teams to excel and deliver the impossible.
Andres began his career as an Engineer in Colombia in 1996 and by 2001 he was the leading a Structural design department in Canada where he moved in 1999. In those years he implemented changes to increase productivity 30% and open new lines of business.
After his MBA, Andres worked at CIBC where he tracked ROI of sales programs and developed operating and sales initiatives to drive revenue and cost improvements. He went onto Management Consulting where he led projects in multiple industries and focus areas - e.g. growth, cost improvement, market entry, M&A due diligence, post-merger integrations among others.
For the past 8 years, Andres has worked in Strategy, Commercial planning and Transformation at Rogers Communications. Most recently, as the V.P., Corporate Strategy and Planning he was responsible for guiding the overall strategy, board dialogue and driving CEO/CFO sponsored transformation initiatives.
A participative leader, with unparalleled adaptability and optimism, Andres embraces the challenge of transforming organizations and leading high-stake initiatives to gain competitive advantage.